Sun AM 12 November 2017 – Riaan Sinden
Rev. 4:1-2; Matt. 11:12; Matt. 6:9-10; Phil. 3:14-16; 1 John 2:15-17; Matt. 6:26; Gen. 3:1-7; Col. 3:1-17; 1 Cor. 2:6-11; John 13:34
One of the major obstacles in our Christian walk is how we view God, and consequently, how we view one another and our circumstances. While going through these things, our view is really limited, but God is calling us to come up higher, to view things from His perspective. After these things I looked, and behold, a door standing open in heaven, and the first voice which I had heard, like the sound of a trumpet speaking with me, said, “Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after these things.” Immediately I was in the Spirit; and behold, a throne was standing in heaven, and One sitting on the throne (Rev. 4:1-2). This is not a call on the level of the flesh; this is speaking to your spirit. Some might say that people living with a heavenly viewpoint are trying to escape the realities of life, and it is possible to be so heavenly minded that you are of no earthly good. But then, what is the greater reality? Is it this which we live in every day or is it that place in God where our spirit can connect with His master plan, where one can see the end from the beginning, destiny and eternity? When we look at the history of the Church, it was those who were heavenly minded who did the most good. From the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and violent men take it by force (Matt. 11:12). The people who forcefully grab hold of the kingdom of heaven are the ones advancing it. You cannot do that if you live a worldly existence. Not to say that we should try and escape where we are, but Jesus taught us to pray: Our Father who is in heaven, hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven (Matt. 6:9-10). There is a heavenly perspective to what we are doing here.
Regrettably, we spend most of our time trying to implement our worldly view on heavenly realities. However, that sort of thinking will fail as frequently as we try it. You cannot view heaven from an earthy perspective. It is therefore crucial that we see and understand everything from a heavenly perspective, especially when it comes to what God is doing, and his Word. We can so easily become entangled and think “Oh no, things are going wrong!” Seen from that point of view, you feel hopeless. When you pray, it is always, “Oh Lord, please help us!” We are not ruling because we are not seeing it from a heavenly perspective, and so we cannot speak accurately into situations. It is only when we approach God’s Word from a heavenly viewpoint that we start seeing a continuous unveiling of the mysteries that are hidden in Christ. That is what our hearts are longing for.
I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Let us, therefore, as many as are perfect, have this attitude; and if in anything you have a different attitude, God will reveal that also to you; however, let us keep living by that same standard to which we have attained (Phil. 3:14-16). Living from a heavenly perspective is something that we need to press into, something that we should desire. We need to grab hold of what God has for us. This response to the upward call is not something that an immature person would do. Mature sons have their minds set on the things from above. It is a mature son that responds to the call to come up higher. This position in Christ allows us to experience more revelation and brings us into an accurate alignment with how God sees things. If we position ourselves accurately when we speak, we speak God’s heart, and when we act, we act God’s heart.
We cannot escape the world we are in – God takes us through different circumstances and trials – but if you do not see things properly, you are going to be so upset with the devil, and waste so much time trying to confront him. God is taking us through different experiences, and in the end, it is for us to grow up to maturity. As we do, we will want to see things the way God does; we will ask Him, “What is it that You are doing?” However, you should be aware that the devil is going to fight this tooth and nail because he wants to keep us trapped in this earthly view. He wants to keep us entangled in the nitty-gritty of life, with things that don’t really matter, making us rely on the systems of this world. He wants to keep you restricted to this worldly viewpoint because this is where his scheming works best. This is where his systems operate. Paul warns us: Do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life is not from the Father but is from the world. The world is passing away, and also its lusts; but the one who does the will of God lives forever (1 John 2:15-17). This passage describes the love of the world not just as a casual fling, but a complete reliance on the world. It is for this reason that the love of the Father cannot be in you. He may love you, but how you see life is how you experience His love. The greatest fear is that we will go through life and never experience the love of God from His perspective. We know He loves us – we sing about it, we talk about it – but there is a viewpoint in heaven, in Christ, where you experience His love on a whole new level.
The worldly systems are designed to lure your mind away from God, and focus it on the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life. Once you start relying on the things that you have, and on what you can do, you start to push God to the back. It is difficult to help someone who believes that they know exactly what they are doing because they just think that you are in the way. When you say, “I have a very secure job”, what you are really saying is, “This job is my security”. Once that job becomes your provider and your security, then you are in trouble! What if you lose your job? No more security? No more provision? On the other hand, if God is your security and your provision, then it does not really matter if you lose your job because you still have your trust in God. Yes, you will go through difficult times, but you will be able to view it from a heavenly perspective. You will know that if God cares for the birds of the air, he will certainly take care of you! (Matt. 6:26)
The problem with lusting after things is that it causes you to be focused on what you want to achieve. God is completely out of the picture. Once you start operating from this perspective, you will disregard all common sense. You will not care if you hurt people, or step on them, as long as you get to the place where you want to be. To achieve this, the enemy will appeal to the eyes of the soul, just like he did in the Garden (Gen. 3:1-7). He told Eve that if she ate, her eyes would be opened, but her eyes were open. Her spiritual eyes were open, her physical eyes were open, so which eyes did he want to open? He wanted to open the ‘soulish’ eyes. He knows that once you start viewing things from that perspective, you become entangled in your own desires. He said, “You will be like God,” but they were already like God.
The soul cannot accurately view the realities of heaven; if the soul is not ruled by the spirit, you will have a completely wrong understanding. God is calling us up higher. He wants us to see things from His perspective. He wants us to see things the way He sees it so that we can be accurately positioned. The worldly mindset is the carnal mindset, where you are only interested in what you want, and you experience God for your immediate circumstances. If you are going through a difficult time, you can view God as your bank. Your prayers will always start with “Give me…”. There is nothing wrong with asking God for things, but there is always a higher dimension, where you ask because you want to be in line. Then if you receive, it is always because God wants to do something. You do not just want to have a survival point of view.
Mature sons pursue the things from above because they have put to death the things of the world (Col. 3:1-17). This is the position in which we should live life. If we can allow this word to really penetrate our hearts, we will change the world! This is the right perspective, where we come into alignment with God. However, having a heavenly perspective can only be accomplished in Christ, through the Holy Spirit. The mind of God cannot be accessed by the wisdom of this age; only by the Spirit of God (1 Cor. 2:6-11). Therefore we cannot access this heavenly perspective without the Spirit. We need to see things from a spiritual vantage point because once our vantage point changes from worldly to heavenly, we see destiny and eternity and we will see ourselves, our brothers and sisters, and everything else, complete in Christ.
How do we see each other? How do we see the people who irritate us and those who always mess up? How do we see the very rich, or the very poor? Can we see God busy fulfilling His plan in their lives? Tolerating people is not the kingdom way; the kingdom perspective is love, kindness and peace. When we see our brothers and sisters in Christ from this perspective, even if they do not see it themselves, then we are in fellowship with the Spirit of God. When we communicate from a place of destiny, we communicate on a level that encourages them to bring down the walls that they have put up. When we see from a heavenly perspective, we see as God sees, and when we speak, we speak God’s heart to our brothers, and our words will reveal the love of God to them. Even when they fail, our love will remain patient and kind.
Our point of view determines how we relate to people. A worldly perspective does not allow us to see people beyond the circumstances that they are in. When you see someone in difficult circumstances, that is how you are going to relate to them. Our judgements are mostly shaped by what a person is experiencing, but our judgements should be shaped by what we see from a heavenly perspective when the love of God is living in our hearts. Remember what Jesus said: A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another (John 13:34). That should be our position in Christ so that we can love from a new perspective.